Men don’t ask directions for a reason

Everyone knows that real men don’t ask for directions, but few know the real reason why.
It’s fear, plain and simple. Though not fear of being lost, or being wrong, or any minor shortcomings the fairer sex might heap upon us.
No, the real reason we males are more than reluctant to ask for directions is the overriding fear some female might try to give us directions. That is a sure path to disaster.
For example, my wife, the Pearl of the Orient, is a very talented lady, but directions and reading maps aren’t her forte. A typical trip question after we have been travelling west for a half-day goes something like this:
“So now we are at west, what direction is that?” she’ll inquire earnestly while pointing off into the sunset.
But in her defence, I must admit she’s a real whiz at keeping the road maps folded neatly and keeping track of my faux pas.
Should the male take his wife’s advice—admittedly, a rare occurrence—and ask the cashier at the gas station for directions, I’ll bet the response from the helpful lady behind the counter will go something like this:
“. . . that place is just the other side of town. Go up the street to your right,” she says, waving her hand left, “up past Mrs. Johnson’s house. It the one with the gingerbread trim and the pink peonies.
“Then on past Mrs. Smith’s . . . she’s got that beautiful long porch, with the swing set, and the fuchsia curtains, and turn right before the bridge,” she continues, again waving her left arm. . . .
You ask if she might draw you a little map. Mistake #2. This requires a group effort with the other cashier and the food prep staff converging with a napkin and a tube of lipstick.
Placing the napkin on the counter, they begin a co-operative work of art, rotating the napkin as lines are drawn and notations noted.
The matter finally comes to a head when the big fat biker waiting impatiently in line behind you snarls, “Three blocks down the hill past the beer store and hang a left!”
You stammer your thanks and hurry off—leaving the staff all huffy about not appreciating their effort.
Luckily things are changing, as Moe showed me on a recent trip in his new van. It was GPS-equipped and it only took the better part of two hours for me to get it up and running.
The sarcasm and running commentary from “Giggles” and the “Pearl” in the back spurred on my efforts.
Finally, I got the home address in the gadget changed from California to Drizzle Creek (I think all mini-vans naturally home in on California—it’s a “Grapes of Wrath” thing).
From then on, the little red arrow faithfully traced our course down the blue line of the designated highway—except for a couple times when it showed we were driving through a cornfield.
Moe assured me we never left the pavement and sure enough, we arrived at our destination without once stopping for directions.
On the way home, I continued to tweak the new toy and found a menu that offered voice prompts. I pushed OK and a chill of the coldest ice ran up and down my spine.
The computer-generated voice was definitely female. I lost all confidence and began putting it to the test.
“Prepare to turn left in one-quarter mile,” it prompted politely.
“Turn left in 300 feet,” it soon added in a stronger tone.
“Turn left in 50 feet,” it ordered even more sternly.
“TURN NOW! TURN NOW! TURN NOW!” the voice shrieks, beeps twice, and flashes an error message as we cruise blithely on through the intersection.
“If possible, make a legal ‘U’ turn in 300 feet,” are the new orders, in a voice now dripping with disdain. We ignore the new directions and continue homeward.
And so it went for the next four hours as I furiously programmed in mis-destinations and we joyously ignored the voice prompts. The co-pilots in the back kept making pointed comments about boys and their toys.
But I think the system was learning from our truancy. As we prepared to make the last left turn, it directed us to “Turn right and proceed on past Mrs. Johnson’s house, the one with the gingerbread trim and. . . .”

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